Mama's Meatballs and Spaghetti

Rocco DiSpirito puts his signature touch on an old favorite.

Dec. 5, 2008— -- Celebrity chef Rocco DiSpirito unveils some recipes that will add zest to your next home-cooked meal. Enjoy a starter of stuffed artichokes, or a tasty take on an old favorite -- spaghetti and meatballs. These recipes are perfect for an Italian feast, so go ahead, DO try this at home.

Click here to view Rocco's Stuffed Artichoke recipe. Click here to see a recipe for Zuppadi Di Pesce. Click here for more meal ideas from the "GMA" recipe archive.

Mama's Meatballs and Spaghetti

3 cloves garlic, crushed

½ yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped

3 tablespoons Bertolli® extra-virgin olive oil

Crushed red pepper

2 28–ounce cans tomato puree

1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1 cup chicken broth

1 teaspoon sugar


1/3 cup chicken broth

¼ cup yellow onion

1 clove garlic, peeled

½ cup torn flat-leaf parsley

½ pound ground beef

½ pound ground pork

½ pound ground veal

1/3 cup plain dry bread crumbs

2 eggs, lightly beaten

¼ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for serving

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

1 teaspoon salt

Bertolli® extra-virgin olive oil

6 cups Mama's Marinara or your favorite marinara

1 pound dried spaghetti


1. In a large saucepan cook the garlic and onion in olive oil over medium-low heat until garlic is tender and onions are translucent but not brown, about 10 minutes.

2. Add tomato products. Pour chicken broth into one of the 28-ounce cans. Fill the rest of the way with water. Add to pan, along with sugar. Stir and bring to a simmer. Season with salt to taste; cover and simmer for 1 hour.

3. Meanwhile, make the meatballs: In a food processor puree chicken broth, onion, garlic and parsley.

4. In a large bowl combine broth mixture, meat, bread crumbs, eggs, cheese, crushed red pepper and salt. Using your hands gently combine; don't over mix.

5. Rub a little olive oil on your hands; form mixture into balls that are slightly larger than golf balls.

6. Pour about ½ inch olive oil into a large sauté pan. Heat over medium-high. When oil is hot, brown meatballs in batches.

7. As meatballs finish browning, lift them gently with a slotted spoon and add to marinara; cover and simmer for about 1 hour.

8. Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Serve meatballs marinara over spaghetti, topped with additional Parmigiano-Reggiano, if desired.